With the ability to get around the Lady Lakers’ havoc-causing press for open looks from the 3-point line and the length to force tough shots, the Lady Vikings built a big enough lead to hold off and eliminate the Lady Lakers 81-68 in the Elite Eight on Tuesday afternoon.
"I thought their height affected us today," Clayton State women’s coach Dennis Cox said. "We were able to get the ball to the rim but we were unable to finish. They played really well today, and beat us one thru five. Usually when we force 32 turnovers and get 20 steals, we come out on the winning end. I give Augustana a lot of credit and wish them luck."
Like many other times, Clayton State gained an early advantage but could never push its led to double digits, resulting in Augustana’s response which led to a 32-25 halftime lead.
Not long after the second half began, the Lady Vikings nailed three 3-pointers to stretch their lead to 43-29 and three more for a 56-33 cushion with less than 14 minutes left. During both of these runs, Augustana also benefited from the ability to penetrate and kick to wide-open shooters.
Bena Hanyard (16 points, eight steals) sparked a rally which pulled Clayton State within seven points with 1:25 to go but the Lady Vikings rebuilt their lead at the foul line to punch their ticket to the Final Four.
Drameka Griggs scored 22 points and Shacamra Jackson added 17 and 10 rebounds for the Lady Lakers, who had their 32-game winning streak ended. Clayton State also shot a season-low 33 percent from the field.
Shaunteva Ashley had 17 points and eight assists for the Lady Vikings, who shot 59 percent from deep. Faith Tinklenberg scored 15 points and Alex Feeney added 14.